Student, Lincoln Shade, motivated by family to pursue degrees in medicine and public health
Lincoln Shade is a current student in the Epidemiology and Biostatistics PhD program in the University of Kentucky’s College of Public Health and a member of the College of Medicine’s MD/PhD Program, a dual-degree program which seeks to train the next generation of physician-scientists to lead, integrate, and innovate in health care, research, and education.
“My combined interests in neurodegenerative disease and genomics led me to choose the MD/PhD program at the University of Kentucky due to its dual strengths in neuropathological research and clinical education,” says Lincoln. “Medicine and research are becoming more collaborative, so it’s important to be exposed to multiple disciplines.”
Lincoln was originally motivated to study neurodegenerative diseases, in part, due to his family’s circumstances. His maternal grandmother and four of her siblings have all died from complications due to dementia.
“I have witnessed first-hand the impact these diseases can have on people and their loved ones,” says Lincoln. “As a result, my research and interests in the fields of genomics and genetics epidemiology is focused on how genetic factors influence human traits, such as human health and diseases like Alzheimer's and other dementias.”
To advance Lincoln’s research, he was recently awarded a prestigious National Institutes of Health (NIH) Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award F30 Fellowship, along with previously receiving T32 and TL1 training grant awards.
Lincoln’s long-term career goal is to become an independently funded physician-scientist and statistical genetics researcher in the field of neuroradiology, which focuses on the diagnosis of abnormalities of the brain, spine, and head and neck.
Lincoln has also published a first-author ground-breaking genome-wide association study of brain arteriolosclerosis, “Genome-wide association study of brain arteriolosclerosis,” with his faculty mentor, Dr. Dave Fardo, biostatistics professor at the University of Kentucky’s College of Public Health.
“Dr. Fardo’s mentorship has been so valuable in my success,” says Lincoln. “In my time working with Dr. Fardo, I have built technical skills with software widely used in genomics research and become familiar with design considerations for genotype-phenotype association studies.”
“Lincoln is an example of an unparalleled student research success story that shows the trajectory and impact of our Ph.D. program,” says Fardo.
Lincoln has also contributed to several other peer-reviewed publications, abstracts, and presented at international conferences. He actively participates in the Trans-Omics for Precision Medicine (TOPMed) program and the Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology (CHARGE) Consortium.
Lincoln was also recognized during National Public Health Week by the University of Kentucky College of Public Health as their 2022 Outstanding Doctoral Student in the Epidemiology and Biostatistics PhD program.